New Players in Latin America Are Attracting Chinese Giants – Now It’s Ualá’s Time
Latin American fintech landscape has been moving fast and poised to grow: and it’s not by chance. After investing $180 million in Brazilian bank solution Nubank in last October, Tencent Holdings, Chinese tech powerhouse has chosen an Argentinian player to aim this time: Ualá.
A financial management app, Ualá allows users to transfer money, make payments and purchases through a prepaid card, besides providing insights into spending – among other features.
With the recent investment, Tencent now joins George Soros and Point72 Ventures – which are already investors of the Argentinian fintech.
Ualá founder Pierpaolo Barbieri told Reuters in a phone interview that “The idea is that it’s not just money. It’s about learning from their experience in China and in other Asian markets to inform our Latin America strategy,” further stating that the investment would help accelerate the company’s growth plans.
Still according to Reuters, Chinese tech firms have been ramping up their interest in Latin America, from ride-hailing company Didi Chuxing to telecoms firm Huawei and search engine Baidu Inc.
Borders may well mean a big gap of distance – but when it comes to technology and innovative solutions, it seems that they don’t play the leading role. And big players are well aware of it, hence the increasing interest of Chinese tech powerhouses in Latin America.
If they are targeting the region, one thing’s for sure: it’s a place more than worthy of keeping an eye on.